Rosy Cole

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Rosy Cole was born and educated in the Shires of England. Her writing career started in her teens. Four apprentice works eventually led to publication of two novels. Life intervened, but she returned to authorship in 2004. She has worked as a Press Officer and Publisher's Reader and is a member of the Society of Authors. Among widespread interests, she lists history, opera, musicals, jazz, the arts, drawing and painting, gemmology, homoeopathy and alternative therapies. Theology also is an abiding interest. As a singer, she's performed alongside many renowned musicians and has run a music agency which specialised in themed 'words-and-music' programmes, bringing her two greatest passions together. Rosy's first book of poetry, THE TWAIN, Poems of Earth and Ether, was published in April 2012, National Poetry Month, and two other collections are in preparation. As well as the First and Second Books in the Berkeley Series, she has written several other historical titles and one of literary fiction. She is currently working on the Third Book in the Berkeley Series. All her books are now published under the New Eve imprint. Rosy lives in West Sussex with her son, Chris, and her Springador, Jack, who keeps a firm paw on the work-and-walkies schedule!

Heraldry

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from Guido Reni's painting of St Michael

 

On the Feast of St Michael and All Angels (Michaelmas)

 
Is this how it should have been?
Day's conflagration bids farewell,
secedes from night's increase,
above the shadowed downs and hills
an ash of silhouetted leaves
and purple isles adrift in sheen-still seas

Fawns sporting soft suede pelts
consort in dappled shade
and flinch at crackling sound,
leap ditch and nettle-bed,
and teazles stand their ground
where angels pass among the thistledown

The seedheads' broken spheres,
like melting moons, float forms
upon the breath of destiny,
green bloom of wheat on purl-ribbed fields,
a silent, living testimony
of grace through winter's whining threnody

Unsheathe your sword, Crusader!
Halt rampaging gods of mammon
that rape the earth and starve the poor,
cohorts of a deviant Demon
whose scorched earth feeds no widened maw,
whose glamorous light beguiles Hell's door!

 

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Botticelli - Annunciation

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William Morris tiled reredos, Clapham Church, West Sussex

poem from The Twain, Poems of Earth and Ether

Copyright

© copyright Rosy Cole 2010,2012,2013

Recent Comments
Former Member
Just out of bed from a long nap (my most recent pastime) I found this fine work, a fitting commemoration of the day. I'm still men... Read More
Wednesday, 30 September 2015 00:54
Rosy Cole
Thanks kindly, Charlie, for the endorsement. It's especially rewarding when readers enjoy a poem because it's personal in a way th... Read More
Saturday, 03 October 2015 13:00
Former Member
I have a short list of people who I feel said the best things ever said. These would be Mark Twain, H.L. Mencken, Dorothy Parker a... Read More
Saturday, 03 October 2015 17:22
878 Hits
7 Comments

Venice Terminal

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In Memory of G, a fellow pilgrim for such a short distance...

 

We were on a train from Padua,
racing towards the Venice lagoon,
when I spotted the child,
two years old, or thereabouts,
a halo of honey-kissed curls
and eyes of molten brown,
like molasses perpetually outpoured.
Expectant, trusting, vibrant with life,
his countenance so beautiful, he stole my breath.
His mother spoke: he gazed at her in rapture,
as if pearls of wisdom fell from her lips,
as if his joy depended on her gentling,
his mind searching the imprint
of a fable only it could measure,
the eyes grown sombre with inchoate loss
of heaven beyond a consuming gulf.

That child captured my heart
in one cataclysmic instant of knowing,
of being plunged into the essence of him,
while we sped from Europe's ancient
seat of learning towards deluged ways
and stones that told of mercantile pride
in affluence and influence
at this crossways of cultures,
where barques blew inshore,
freighted with silks and spices,
tea and sweetmeats, muslins,
dyes, attar of roses and
lapis lazuli blue as summer midnight,
a city where craning Gothic
confronts rich mosaics and the labyrinthine
excesses of dissembling Byzantium.

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To this day, I know not if he was an apparition
conjured from some buried pining for lost youth.
Alighting at the station, I saw no trace.
But what had been rendered in high relief,
inspiring agonies of curdled joy, was forged in truth
and wreathed in the mystery of a closer sphere.
Suddenly, that child was everywhere!
In all the frescoes of St Anthony at Padua,
who embraced the infant and Madonna lily -
token of a fragile, stainless gift -
in the bronze statue, offering earth one hand
whilst drawing down the cherub from the skies
with the other, their fingers touching; an echo
of Michelangelo's lightning moment of Creation.
I dwelt long in the courtyard of the venerable magnolia,
ravished by eternity.
 
There was no sharing, no way the words would form.
Travel tickets conveyed no separate journey,
our shadowed pasts divergent and our mission matchless.
As pilgrims, it was the closest we ever got.

My unshod feet still haunt those ancient streets
in the supernal multiverse of gilt and guiltless cities.
The Vision melts the stark and leaden planes of Here.
A nun, singing like an angel, banished dissonance,
floating arpeggios that linger still in purer air.
Outside, a beggar, drunk on grappa, cringed at heel-height streetscapes,
shuffled and strained to grasp the feet of passers-by.
What is there but prayer, inspired by glimpses of Transfiguration?

The last day, we returned to Venice, bound for home.
His nagging pain, dismissed by medics, was graven in fatigue.
Metal wings clove terrestrial darkness, new dawns forgotten.
We have been blessed and fortified for this, I thought.
A week later, they handed him over to palliative care.
There was nothing to be done.
The dream of far-flung shores and bold discovery, just that.
By summer, he was gone.

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from THE TWAIN, Poems of Earth and Ether

Copyright

© Copyright Rosy Cole, 2009, 2012, 2013, 2015

Recent Comments
Former Member
Venice Terminal is one of those pieces that call to mind incidents from my own and others' lives. G was your husband? In your ment... Read More
Saturday, 26 September 2015 02:55
Former Member
The fact that you remember the particulars to her passing is poinient enough. I was blessed to be one of the steel magnolias in ... Read More
Saturday, 26 September 2015 07:39
Katherine Gregor
Words fail me, but my heart reaches out to you.
Saturday, 26 September 2015 12:04
960 Hits
5 Comments

Releasing Angels From Granite

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'I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.' Michelangelo.

A heartfelt, hopeful and honest screed for scribes...

 

There is always a chance…

There is a chance that your novel will snag the attention of some influential agent who understands where you're coming from and how the dynamics of the marketplace might be harnessed to your book, that he/she will carry the rest of the team and that you will get to edit and polish it under the eye of a sympathetic and enthusiastic editor.

There is always a chance that you will eventually hear that a publishing house wants to pick up the work. It could take a year, or two...or three...

There is always a chance that you will get a non-returnable advance…

There is always a chance that you will attract sales, sell online, to bookshops, to libraries, achieve foreign rights…

There is a chance that your work will gain sufficient interest for said agent to want to see follow-up titles…

There is even an off-the-scale chance that, in terms of success, you'll become the next J K Rowling… (When nothing is certain, anything is possible...)

But bear in mind…

Such phenomenal luck happens by accident. No one predicts it. No one contrives it. No one knows why or how it comes about, though in retrospect reasons will be assigned, patterns recreated with superstitious obsession and hopes staked on dreams and hot air.

Rather…

Write because it is your own sacred path to comprehension of the world and humanity...

Because you want to share some of those revelations...

Because it puts life's joys and agonies in a truer perspective...

Because you have a story to tell and, by heaven, you're going to tell it…

Write, develop the knack of objective appraisal, and refine your process. The insights gained by commitment alone will work greater wonders than an MFA, or Creative Writing Degree… (New authors seldom believe this!)

Write...and keep writing...and you will have many adventures and epiphanies…

Write...because it will do the work of the Sculptor on the glistening marble (granite, maybe, for most of us!) that is the unique You...and will thereby change the universe…

And for those following the dream of fame and fortune, it may be worth noting…

There is no automatic connection between writing well and the ability to write and construct fiction.

Releasing cherubs from stone is not for everyone in that sense.


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Margaret Drabble's writing room, jigsaw pieces on the table.

Copyright

© Copyright Rosy Cole 2015

Recent Comments
Monika Schott
Gorgeous, Rosy. ... Read More
Wednesday, 19 August 2015 20:26
Rosy Cole
Moni, that's much appreciated. Thanks! :-)
Friday, 21 August 2015 16:32
Ken Hartke
Thanks, Rosy, I needed to see this today.
Wednesday, 19 August 2015 22:07
1344 Hits
9 Comments

Echoes of Mercy, Whispers of Love

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'To continue one's journey in the darkness with one's footsteps guided by illumination of remembered radiance is to know courage of a peculiar kind – the courage to demand that light continue to be light even in the surrounding darkness.'

This quotation from Howard Thurman prefaces award-winning writer, Aberjhani's volume of poetry, THE BRIDGE OF SILVER WINGS. For me, it just about sums up the human predicament which he elaborates upon with stunning effect.

Haloes, rainbows, the cycle of the seasons and the full spectrum of emotions from love to hate to love are explored in its pages.

These verses are packed tight with powerful images that come thick and fast like a blessed assault upon the mind and heart. They ring with philosophy, with compassion, with hope and with tokens of resurrection. And they are sometimes barbed with challenges, as in Angel of War:


'Does the potential for peace make the reality of hate sweeter?'

And in Angel of Healing:

'Dare to love yourself as if you were a rainbow with gold at both ends.'


Aberjhani's writing blows the mind and frees the psyche of any rigid assumptions about ancestral heritage. Here, our collective experience is starkly rendered. The transparency of one culture overlays another, and another, to form the daguerrotype of possibilities that is homo sapiens, interacting, almost like the elements themselves, with the created world and modified only by context and its imperatives.

Nowhere is this more apparent than in All Night in Savannah the Wind Wrote Poetry. The gale knows nothing of Time. It is a primeval force. It has seen all mankind's feats, frustrations and follies before and is a screeching reminder, 'like knives on fire', of what comes next in the logical gamut of human reaction.


'...they [the winds] cast and recast

nets of lexicons inside the womb

of the river's roaring belly, hauling up myths

born in Georgia and legends sung in Carolina...'


'...wind typed furiously remembrances of Buddha;

on the aching spines of weeping pines it carved

the bleeding parables of Christ and

the pleading hadiths of Muhammad,'


'Wind of Confederate blood boiling gray miseries

Wind of black slaves dancing juju jazz charisma.'


This is the language of the Book of Revelation and it is blinding. With rhythms like these, you might well feel that the Creation of Man was a Bad Idea, one of God's regrettable afterthoughts.

As well as the melting-pot of traditions and civilisations, there is a blurring of the boundaries of the senses. We tend to identify them singly but we know they don't function alone. In Sunday Afternoon and the Jazz Angel Cometh, they seem to coincide in an orgasmic reunion which not only celebrates life but redeems it.


'As history bleeds forbidden light

thunder-heavy tears drip flavored adagios,

splash and explode into champagne solos.


...In the center of time's thorny labyrinth there you

are – naked you swallow quasars and spit raw genius,

cook your poems fresh, make music, make sense,

make life.'


The Poet-Angels Who Came to Dinner is reminiscent of the biblical parable of the King planning a banquet for guests who declined his invitation. He then sent out his servant into the highways and byways to round up the dregs of humanity. It also echoes Christ's feeding of the multitude and the burning inspiration felt by the two disciples on the Road to Emmaus who failed to recognise the stranger walking beside them. Only in the breaking of bread as a guest at their table did they surprise the Risen Lord.

These presences are termed “Peace-Be-Still” and “As-Goes-Love-So-Goes-Life”. They manifest themselves as the poet prepares his lone and paltry supper, transforming the fare into an epicurean delight. A knock at the door heralds uninvited guests and with a renewed benevolence of spirit, he finds he has much to share.

There are harrowing pieces, too. Once Was a Singer for God (remembering Nekia) pays tribute to a gospel singer whose life was blighted by every kind of cruelty and despair, but whose sufferings, the writer says, 'coated your tongue with heaven's favor'. She lives again within the memory of those honeyed vocals which are earnest of her bid for Heaven.


'No one knew how you transformed

scars on your back into scented songs...


Was that your mind running naked through the West

while your soul warbled haikus in the East?'


There is a poem for New Orleans in the grip of Katrina, for remembrance of September 11, 2001, for Christmas and New Year's Eve, for Hallowe'en, for Valentine Days and Nights, for Earth Days and Seasons, for Grace and for Gratitude, a whole catalogue of situations in which the toiling race is cast upon the breast of Fate. And in the shrillest reaches of despond, isolation, torment, pain, the appropriate Angels stoop in benediction. Their spreading wings are linked into an arch that paves the way to Deliverance, to the Land of Hope and to Salvation, where anguish dies and destruction is swallowed in the antithesis of itself.


ANGEL OF EARTH DAYS AND SEASONS


A soft dream of green

colors starlit intentions

with sincerity.


In your hands winter

is a book with cloud pages

that snow pearls of love,


Your flight shines classic -

composed of symphonic night

sand honey-hued days.


Inside your laughter

spring's kiss animates

the beatof summer's warm song.


In your hair oceans

leap with sky-blue abandon

and sacred timelines.


Eyes of bright autumn

stare with red tear-stained wisdom

at human regret.


Bombs explode gashes

that flicker tales of men's blood

splattering your lips.


Rivers of poets

flow blues-heavy urgencies

naked on your knees.


Even when muddy

your wings sparkle bright wonders

that heal broken worlds.


In the dancing fields

of your sweet and holy ways

heaven blossoms gold.


I have indulged myself and the reader with copious quotation, but there are scores more, just as good and even better. Aberjhani's work repays revisiting again and again. This is surely a sign of consummate talent.

 

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Website: https://www.linkedin.com/in/aberjhani

Aberjhani is also a member of Creative Thinkers International. I am proud to call him a friend.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recent Comments
Katherine Gregor
Angel of Healing: 'Dare to love yourself as if you were a rainbow with gold at both ends.' It's so beautiful, I could weep.... Read More
Tuesday, 11 August 2015 20:38
Rosy Cole
Yes, I agree. And what the poet means here has nothing to do with ego or narcissism, but a sacred work of the Creator. It's a wond... Read More
Wednesday, 12 August 2015 10:01
Former Member
Loving myself as if I were a "rainbow with gold at both ends" is something I can only imagine in the next life. But I like the tho... Read More
Thursday, 13 August 2015 00:00
2002 Hits
4 Comments

Latest Comments

Stephen Evans Faith and Grace
20 August 2017
I find finding balance an ongoing struggle. This is a helpful perspective.
Rosy Cole A Word in Appreciation
18 August 2017
Thank you all for the gr8 posts!!!
Rosy Cole A Word in Appreciation
18 August 2017
Lovely to see you again, Nicholas. Hope you'll continue to share with us as often as you have time.....
Nicholas Mackey A Word in Appreciation
17 August 2017
Thank you, Stephen for saying this - couldn't agree more and it's great to find a home that we all c...
Stephen Evans On the Importance of Toasters
11 August 2017
Might have helped his headaches.

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